Chevrolet Debunks the Most Common Mini-Car Myths

It’s time again for one of your favorite segments, North Texas Chevy lovers. Myth busting! In this edition, we’ll examine a growing trend in cities around the world: mini-cars. For awhile now, I’ve been talking about the 2013 Chevrolet Spark, Chevrolet’s four-passenger, five-door hatchback, that was designed to challenge what’s possible in the mini-car segment.

But of course, with all new technologies and creations, there are common misconceptions and myths. Most of the time, these myths are complete bologna and I take a special joy in helping educate those who are willing to listen on the truths!

So here you have it, Dallas Ft Worth and Grapevine – myths about the 2013 Chevrolet Spark debunked straight from the horse’s (or automanufactuer’s in this case) mouth.

Myth No. 1 – Mini cars aren’t Safe.

False. The Spark features the same advanced safety technologies available on the rest of the Chevrolet passenger car lineup. In fact, the Spark protects both driver and passengers with 10 standard air bags, including dual-stage frontal air bags, seat-mounted side air bags and side curtain air bags that extend over the front and rear seating rows. A strong body frame made of high strength steel makes up more than 62 percent of the Spark’s underbody and 42 percent of its upper body.

Myth No. 2 – Mini cars are cramped and uncomfortable.

False. The Spark’s interior is spacious with room to fit four adults comfortably and actually offers more space for people and stuff than its competitors in the mini car segment. Its cargo area of 11.4 cubic feet behind the rear seat is 20 percent more spacious than the Fiat 500 and 225 percent more than the Scion IQ. With the rear seats folded down, drivers have 31.2 cubic feet of space. That is enough space to hold a  Samsonite laptop backpack, a 25” rolling luggage bag, 30″ suitecase upright and even a golf bag!

Myth No. 3 – Mini cars handling and vehicle performance leaves something to be desired.

In reality, the Spark not only looks fun to drive, it is fun to drive. Electric power steering and MacPherson strut front suspension are designed to deliver taut, tight handling characteristics that better connect the driver with the road and provide outstanding overall stability. Spark also has a tight turning circle of only 32.5 feet (9.9 meters), which enhances its maneuverability in urban areas.

Don’t believe this one? Swing by the Classic Chevrolet dealership in Grapevine and test drive one for yourself. I’m sure you’ll change your mind.

So there you have it, DFW. Three of the most common mini car myths debunked! What other things have you heard about the Chevrolet Spark? Let us know, and Classic Chevrolet will be more than happy to help change your perception.

Swing by the Classic Chevrolet dealership today and test drive a 2013 Chevy Spark for yourself!

Thanks to Cassidy Schafer for contributing.

[Source: Media.GM.com]

General Motors Named a Green Corporate Citizen

“Going Green” has become a part of many of our lives. From using more energy-efficient light bulbs to driving hybrid or electric vehicles, it’s clear to see that we as a population are becoming more and more green. But we aren’t the only ones… your very own automobile manufacturer, GM, has been named a Green Corporate Citizen in the large company category by the Waste & Recycling News and Republic Services in September.

So what exactly made General Motors a nominee in this category? How about the fact that all of GM’s global facilities recycle or reuse more than 90 percent of the waste they generate and 102 of them are landfill-free. In fact,  GM recycled or reused 2.5 million metric tons at its facilities worldwide – equivalent to the contents of more than 38 million trash bags – in 2011, the company recycles more waste from its worldwide facilities than any automaker. Last year alone, the company’s recycling and reuse efforts avoided 10 million metric tons of CO2-equivalent emissions. Staggering, wouldn’t you say?

In a GM press release, John Bradburn, manager of waste-reduction efforts at GM, said, “We look at how we can effectively design out waste first, and then seek out direct reuses and innovative recycling projects. Whether it’s repurposing shipping crates into urban garden beds or generating revenue from recycling our scrap, our efforts often result in significant community and bottom-line impact.”

This is yet another example, DFW Chevy lovers, of how GM is continuously striving for improvement and reducing its carbon footprint, and has committed to achieve 25 more landfill-free sites and reduce total waste another 10 percent by 2020. Kind of makes you proud to be driving around Dallas, Ft Worth, Grapevine and other North Texas cities in that new Chevrolet, doesn’t it?

Check out these other ways GM is demonstrating environmental progress and energy efficiency:

  • Received ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year award for energy management.
  • Earned ENERGY STAR certification for superior energy efficiency at two facilities.
  • Developed 21 habitat programs around the world certified by the Wildlife Habitat Council — more than any other automaker.
  • Matches 8,500 students each year with mentors from all U.S. GM manufacturing facilities in its GM GREEN watershed education program, now in its 23rd year.
  • Hosts nearly 30 megawatts of solar power, with plans to double it by 2015 and further increase renewable energy use to 125MW by 2020.

If you aren’t already driving around in a new Chevrolet, maybe you should swing by the number one North Texas Classic Chevrolet dealership and start reducing your carbon footprint. Chevrolet has numerous energy efficient carsand even SUV and trucks. So what are you waiting for? Head on over!

Thanks to Cassidy Schafer for contributing.

[Source: Media.GM.com]

GM Adding 500 New I.T. Jobs in Austin, Texas

Attention all Chevrolet lovers in Texas! Our very own state capital has been chosen to host the first of several new GM IT Innovation Centers in the U.S., and they are looking to hire software developers, project managers, database experts, business analysts and other information technology professionals!

According to the May 2011 Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment Report, Austin already has roughly 46,000 people with the skills GM is seeking, which is why our state capital was chosen.

In a GM press release, GM Chief Information Officer, Randy Mott, said, “We want IT to keep up with the imagination of our GM business partners, and to do that, we plan to re-balance the employment model over the next three years so that the majority of our IT work is done by GM employees focused on extending new capabilities that further enable our business.”

“We anticipate hiring as many as 500 new GM employees in Austin,” Mott said. “We look to the Innovation Centers to design and deliver IT that drives down the cost of ongoing operations while continuously increasing the level and speed at which innovative products and services are available to GM customers.”

“The next generation of IT workers, the talented visionaries we want contributing at the Innovation Center, are being trained at top computer science schools in Texas and surrounding states,” Mott said. “The IT Innovation Centers are critical to our overall IT business strategy and transformation.”

Did you know that there are already more than 4,500 GM employees in Texas including approximately 2,500 people in Arlington that build Chevrolet, GMC and Cadillac SUVs.  In fact, it was recently announced that a third shift will start in the first quarter of 2013, and a new $200 million stamping plant is under construction that will create or retain approximately 180 jobs in Arlington.

So Grapevine, Dallas and Ft Worth Chevrolet lovers, if it has been your dream to work for this amazing company, it could very well come true! Stay tuned to your number one North Texas Chevrolet dealership for the latest on all-things GM.

[Source: GM Media]

Thanks to Cassidy Schafer for contributing.

The Chevy Silverado’s Cylinder Switch Saves Fuel Without Sacrificing the Power of a V8

Hey Dallas Ft Worth Chevrolet owners, did you know that more than half of all full-size Chevy pickups sold 20 years ago are still on the road today? I’m not surprised seeing how the Silverado has a reputation of being the most dependable, longest lasting full-size pickup in the world. Not to mention, it’s V-8 engine has a track record that is practically untouchable.

In a GM press release, GM said that more than 85 percent of Silverado customers use their pickups to tow or haul and that these customers expect their trucks to be economical and they expect them to last. Until now, the only real draw back to driving a full-size pickup has been the fuel economy.This is no longer the case as GM engineers are improving the fuel efficiency of its mainstream 5.3-liter V-8 engine by switching off four of the cylinders when they aren’t needed.

Jordan Lee, Chevrolet’s global chief engineer for small block engines, said “Rather than adding turbochargers or multi-valve cylinder heads to increase the power of smaller engines, we chose to keep the proven capability of our larger V-8 truck engines, and save fuel by switching off half of the cylinders when they aren’t needed.”

By giving customers V-8 power and capability when they need it, with enhanced fuel efficiency when they don’t, Silverado offers the best EPA fuel economy estimates of any V-8 pickup, said Lee. “In fact, our 5.3-liter V-8 delivers EPA fuel economy estimates comparable to some competitors’ V6 engines.”

So all-in-all, what does this mean for future Silverado drivers in Grapevine and the rest of the DFW metroplex? It means better fuel economy without sacrificing the power of that famous Chevrolet V-8. Sound pretty good to me… what do you guys think? Check out this video from Chevrolet below.


[Source: media.GM.com]

Thanks to Cassidy Schafer for contributing.

Understanding the Difference Between an Automatic and Manual Transmission

When it comes to getting a new car in Dallas, we have a lot of decisions to make. Obviously, we have to select a make and model first. But beyond that, we will have to decide on other options such as color, interior, engine size, features and sometimes transmission.

For quite some time, we’ve had the option to choose between driving a vehicle with an automatic transmission or a manual transmission. It seems that these days, this option is much less of an issue. In fact, I don’t think my younger sisters are even aware of or know the difference between the two. For this reason, I decided to share a little bit of basic knowledge for those of you out there who are unaware, as well.

Let’s start out by putting it plainly: in a manual transmission, the driver is responsible for shifting the gears as speed changes, and in an automatic transmission, the car is responsible for shifting the gears. Obviously, there are advantages and disadvantages to both transmissions and the one that’s best for you all depends on your personal preferences and your driving habits.

Overall, the automatic transmission is considered the easier of the two because you’ll have to learn how to coordinate the clutch and the throttle in a manual. Speaking as someone who learned how to drive in a vehicle with a manual transmission, I will admit that it can be a bit challenging. The learning curve will be different for everyone.

Now let’s take a look at some of the major differences.  A manual transmission out the gate will typically be about $1000 cheaper and will require fewer repairs. They also tend to get better mileage. An automatic transmission on the other hand,  requires less stress and less concentration. They are also much easier to drive in traffic compared to a stick shift. Though they have higher repair costs, this may be worth it to some considering you have an extra free hand and free leg.

Like I said before, the choice is strictly up to the driver and the driver’s preferences. If you haven’t made up your mind yet, you can always head down to your number one North Texas Chevrolet dealership and try out both.

Thanks to Cassidy Schafer for contributing. 

[Source: DriveSteady.com]

 

 

The Top Ways to Get Pulled Over in Dallas Ft Worth

Everybody gets that feeling… you’re driving along in your new or used Chevrolet and you pass a police officer, see one in your review or up the road and immediately you check your speed. I’ve found myself doing this even when I’m not speeding. I guess it’s just a natural reaction to not wanting to get pulled over.

Have you ever wondered which violations have the highest chance of landing you on the side of the road with those blue and reds flashing in your review? Recently, three police agencies and two independent traffic experts loaned their expertise to Edmunds.com and shared their top five most common traffic stops.

Speeding. This one is of course, the most obvious. Speeding is dangerous for a number of reasons. Detective William Bustos, the officer in chard of the LAPD’s traffic detectives told Edmunds.com that the faster you go, the longer it takes to react to an unexpected situation, whether it’s a pedestrian stepping into the street or another car making an unexpected lane change.

Illegal cell phone use. Surely you’ve all seen a school zone in Dallas or Ft Worth that bans cell phone use while those yellow lights are flashing. I can think of several in Grapevine alone, and trust me, that is a sure-fire way to get pulled over and it’s not going to be a cheap ticket. If you’re going over the school zone speed limit also, then you’re doubly in trouble.

Equipment violations. Some of the most common items on this list include heavily tinted windows, burned-out headlights, broken windshields, expired tags, the lack of a front license plate and loud exhaust modifications.

Following too closely and improper lane changes.  Following too closely can easily cause accidents by shortening a driver’s reaction time. Honestly, you just shouldn’t do this at all. An improper lane change means cutting someone off or changing lanes without looking first. If you get caught doing this, you may also get hit with failure to signal.

Gary Biller, executive director of the National Motorists Association, listed a few other things that will get you pulled over quickly including:

  • Cruising in the left lane of a multilane highway instead of using it only to pass slower traffic on the right
  • Driving more slowly than the normal traffic flow
  • Peeling out from a stoplight or stop sign, and squealing tires in general
  • Drag racing
  • Racking up lots of unpaid parking or traffic violations

Though we may sometimes forget, every thing on this list is illegal for a reason: it’s dangerous and can lead to more accidents. So remember, follow the laws to avoid paying our lovely DFW cities and also to avoid damaging our beloved Chevrolets or our loved ones.

Thanks to Cassidy Schafer for contributing.

 

Chevrolet Volt Owners Speak Out About Thier Savings to Consumer Reports

The word is spreading, DFW. According to Consumer Reports web users, many Chevy Volt owners are claiming they use even less gas than Consumer Reports’ formal tests have assumed.

Consumer Reports has based their fuel economy calculations for the Volt being operated by electricity 70 percent of the time and gasoline 30 percent of the time. But some of their forum users are claiming that they operate almost exclusively on electricity. Here’s a few examples from Consumer Reports:

  • User carriegordo reports driving 7,000 miles on just 7.3 gallons of gas. That’s less than a single tankful in the Volt’s already small 9.3-gallon tank.
  • User marclee reported that 2800 of the 3200 miles he’s driven his Volt have been on electricity. That leaves just 400 on gas. (These numbers are easily retrieved from the efficiency screen on the Volt’s central display.)
  • User themajor1975 reported driving 11,000 miles on 62 gallons of gas.
  • Two other forum users reported driving more than 2500 miles on 10.7 gallons of gas, and 500 miles on just one gallon.

While we can’t say with certainty that this is the case with all Volt owners, it does prove that the Volt has a tremendous amount of potential when it comes to saving on fuel.

Want to hear it from a Volt owner yourself? Check out this customer testimonial from Kory Levoy. He’s spent $38 in gas – in two months!

[Source: Consumer Reports]

Thanks to Cassidy Schafer for contributing.

How to Survive a Fender Bender in Dallas Ft Worth

How many of you in the Dallas Ft Worth metroplex have ever been involved in a car accident? I’m willing to bet almost all of you have whether it was your fault or theirs, minor or major. If you’ve never been involved in an accident, it’s really good to know how to act in the situation and what to do and not to do.

For starters, don’t drive away. If you can, move your vehicle to a safe place out of traffic even if there appears to be no damage. If the other car is parked and the owner isn’t around, leave a note with your name and contact information. A hit and run is highly illegal and expensive, so you’re going to want to avoid that.

Second, don’t assume that A.) no one is injured and B.) your car or truck isn’t damaged.  Assess yourself and your passengers. Even low-impact collisions can cause injuries, some not appearing until days after the accident. Often times, you’ll hear of people complaining of back or neck pain days later. As for your new or pre-owned Chevy, there isn’t a sure-fire way to tell that no damage was done until an expert takes a closer look.

Third, don’t sign any documents and avoid accepting or offering cash for repairs. You may end up paying out-of-pocket to repair damage to your car that only appears minor, or you could pay the other driver more than necessary.

Fourth, don’t assume that the accident is too minor to be reported. Call the police or file a report on your own. This will help your insurance agent handle your claim. An accident report could also help protect you from issues that may arise later about the extent of damage to your vehicle or injuries to you and the other driver.

Lastly, stay calm. Take notes and photos,and exchange information with the other driver,including your name,address,phone number,driver’s license number,license plate number,insurance company,and policy number.

Car accidents will stress even the most laid back of people. But if you keep your cool and remember the information above, you’ll get through it just fine. Should you happen to be in accident in the near future, be sure to take your vehicle into Classic Chevrolet’s service department and let your number one North Texas Chevrolet dealership experts take a look.

[Source:State Farm]

Thanks to Cassidy Schafer for contributing.